My two cousins and I went to see this movie over the weekend. I never buy popcorn because I don’t feel like spending $8 a tub, but here I got three of them for about $5. And it was yummy. The theater was clean, with comfortable seats and a good sound system (maybe a little too loud at times). But the coolest thing was that before the previews started, there was an announcement to stand for the singing of the Indian national anthem. It was a video of an Army contingent near a glacier in the far North, with an instrumental of the anthem. Apparently, only this chain of theaters does this, but I quite like the idea of playing a patriotic tune to a captive gathering. It’s a bit ironic that the anthem played before this particular movie, “PK.” It’s the highest-grossing Hindi movie to date, but it’s generated a lot of controversy, especially from right-wing Hindu groups for its depiction of religions in the movie. An alien played by Aamir Khan lands on Earth and tries to figure out human belief systems, with very hilarious and, many times, “insulting” results. The storyline was pretty good, there weren’t too many song and dance numbers and it seemed lined up for a sequel at the end. All in all, good entertainment. Of course, the storyline is all I understood. Nearly all of the dialogue was in Hindi and I’ll have to watch it again once I learn a bit more.
I’ve decided that Hindi is the most useful language to learn. The local language, Kannada, is specific only to this state, whereas Hindi is not only the national language but seems to be the one that most local people know, not English. I’ve been fine so far with English, but occasionally I’ve needed some sign language and putting on my best Indian accent while talking to a few cab or autorickshaw drivers. My Indian accent is really good but it sounds so funny to me when I try and speak the way that Indians here speak. And occasionally, when I’ve tried to speak with drivers who only speak Kannada, I start throwing in Malayalam words. That’s the language of Kerala which is where my parents are from, and which was actually my very first language, before English. I can understand everything, but speaking it now is difficult since many of the pronunciations are tough and I’m so rusty since I never speak it at home. I’ll need it, though, when I visit Kerala in a few weeks for my cousin’s wedding.
Okay, off to see another apartment possibility. The broker I’m working with, Ravi, gets so excited about some of the flats he’s describing to me, so I’ve learned to temper my own expectations. The last one I saw was beautiful — a large apartment with a great kitchen and huge terrace, but there were security issues since it was just above a business and shared a staircase with employees there. I saw some creepy men loitering around, so immediately nixed that one. Hopefully today’s flat doesn’t have that factor.